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RealTime IT News

Net Shares Reverse Course

Internet stocks were falling with the overall market midday Wednesday after getting a jump start earlier in the session due to better-than-expected earnings from several firms.

At 12:15 p.m. Eastern, internet.com's Internet Stock Index had lost 7.93, or 1.10 percent, to 715.62, the Nasdaq Composite was off 31.52 to 3,679.71 and the Dow Jones industrials had lost 145.81 to 10,979.01 due largely to weakness in financial stocks.

Drkoop.com (KOOP) had jumped 1-3/32 to 3-3/4 after announcing several steps to improve its long-term prospects. On Tuesday, the company warned it will post a bigger-than-expected first-quarter loss following the restructuring of a content deal with America Online Inc. (AOL). The company is giving AOL about a 10 percent stake in lieu of cash as part of a deal to feature its content on the online service. Drkoop.com is also planning a similar deal with Go.com (GO).

Drkoop.com has also retained Bear Stearns & Co. to explore several strategic alternatives, although it did not say if those would include a sale.

Medscape (MSCP) was up 1/8 to 4-5/16. The online medical publisher reported first-quarter revenues jumped to $6 million from $1.65 million a year ago. The company lost 46 cents a share, meeting analyst expectations.

eBay Inc. (EBAY) was off 2-3/16 to 151-3/8 after hitting 161-5/16 earlier in the session. The online auctioneer late Tuesday reported first-quarter profits of 6 cents a share, 3 cents better than expected.

Internet design and consulting firm Razorfish Inc. (RAZF) was up 1/2 to 19-5/8. The company's first-quarter net income rose to 5 cents a share. Excluding special items, the company earned 7 cents, a penny better than estimates.

CMGI Inc. (CMGI) was down 2-7/16 to 59-1/2 after reaching 65. The company said its AltaVista unit had signed up 2.5 million subscribers for its free Internet service.

About.com Inc. (BOUT) was off 1/4 to 32-1/2. The company, which is set to report earnings later this week, was reiterated a "buy" by E*Offering.

F5 Networks (FFIV) had plunged 17-49/64 to 40-15/16. The company, whose products optimize Internet content delivery, reported second-quarter earnings of 18 cents a share, in line with analyst estimates.


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